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Things I Want My Daughters to Know: A Novel Paperback – January 20, 2009


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Paperback, January 20, 2009
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Things I Want My Daughters to Know: A Novel + The Friendship Test: A Novel + The Reading Group: A Novel (P.S.)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 374 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; 1 Reprint edition (January 20, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006168659X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061686597
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,343,700 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Elizabeth Noble is the author of the internationally bestselling novels The Reading Group, The Friendship Test, and Alphabet Weekends. She lives with her husband and their two daughters in New York City.


More About the Author

Elizabeth Noble is the internationally bestselling author of The Reading Group, The Friendship Test, Alphabet Weekends, and Things I Want My Daughters to Know. She lives in New York City with her husband and their two daughters.

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Megan L. Bruemmer on May 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
I loved this book. I cried frequently, but in a good, thought-provoking way. I was glad I was on a plane flying home to see my mom when I first started reading the book. She had just lost her mom a couple days before. I think I cried thinking of her pain and cried because I was so grateful than my mom is still with me. She says that she wants to read this book as well, once she has healed a little more.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Book Girl on May 14, 2009
Format: Paperback
THINGS I WANT MY DAUGHTER TO KNOW, by Elizabeth Noble, is a book to which many women can relate, in one way or another. Telling the story of what happens to four daughters after the death of their mother, Noble uses letters written by the mother before her death and the points of view of each of the four daughters to tell a story about love and healing. As one of three daughters, I found many of the sentiments in the book relatable and common (especially since I read it right around Mother's Day).

If you're looking for a quick read that will make you want to call your mom immediately, this book is it. Several scenes are powerful, including one in which the mother reflects on the four days she gave birth to them. The letters written from Barbara, the mother, are often reflective and more honest than she had been with her daughters previously.

I took issue with this: Though the book is emotional, it feel extremely plot-driven, and much of the interior monologue feels contrived. Every character, in the span of a year after Barbara's death, goes through some extreme incident. In the pages of the book, you're given death of a central character (to start off with), a marriage proposal, a car accident, an affair, a horrible marriage turned good again, a surprise about the true paternity of one of the daughters, a drunken argument that stops communication for a few months, a pregnancy, and a new boyfriend for one of the daughters who just happens to fit in perfectly and fall in love with her immediately. And somehow, after everything, the entire book wraps up perfectly in the end, with everyone feeling somehow resolved about what has happened since the death of Barbara.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Diane on June 1, 2009
Format: Paperback
Barbara is the mother in this book to four daughters. There is Lisa, the oldest, who is afraid of commitment and sabotages most relationships that she is in. There is Jennifer who is fighting to keep her marriage alive, Amanda who is the wanderlust of the family and the youngest, Hannah, who is the teenager and is struggling to find her place in the family and in the world.

We only learn about Barbara and her relationships with her girls through letters that she writes to each one of them before she passes away.

I expected more from this book; more of a story between the mom and her daughters. I was let down with this one. It was just an okay book for me.
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Format: Paperback
This book was kind of slow going, and never really drew me in very much. It wasn't bad, but it also wasn't great. The description made it sound better than it was. But I did finish it, and in the end was somewhat interested in some of what was going on. I'm sure some people will really love it, but for me it was just average.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This heartfelt, bittersweet novel about mother-daughter relationships brought me laughter and tears, often at the same time. Elizabeth Noble truly captures the heart and makes me want to be a better mother. This is a one-of-a-kind read.
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